Gratitude (Walking Prayer)

Do you express your gratitude daily or regularly? If you don’t, there is one way you can begin improving your life immediately, and that is to express your gratitude for your life, your family and friends, and the abundance which flows through your life.

Dr. Wayne Dyer and Anthony Robbins urge us to express our gratitude and to be mindful of our blessings. This expression of gratitude opens up our lives in marvelous, unexpected ways.

If we focus on what we see as lacking in our lives, we give that lack more value and we bring more of that lack into our lives. Curiously, if we begin to act as though we already have that abundance (we do; think about it!), we will invite even more abundance into our lives.

Note: below is an excerpt from a variation on the gratitude exercise (or walking prayer) I recite out loud as I walk the trail system here in town. I recite it once a day.

I mean no offense to any of my readers; I would just like to state my personal belief about the nature of the divine. My place of worship is in nature. I am not a religious person; I merely hope to become a more spiritual person. My idea of the divine is all inclusive. I believe that – if these exist – we create heaven and hell here on Earth. I do believe that there is a divine spark in each of us and in all creatures.

As a final note, the idea of “Spirit” or “Source” as a name for the Divine is from Dr. Wayne Dyer. He has written extensively about source being intention and intention being source. Additionally, he has written extensively about living one’s life purposefully: intentionally and mindfully. I recommend his books highly; I consider Dr. Dyer to be one of our greatest teachers. 

This is my walking prayer:

“Thank you for my life. Thank you for my Mom and my Dad.

Thank you for the air that I breathe, the water I drink, and the food that I eat.

Thank you Source, thank you Spirit for everything. [You may use whatever you are comfortable in using: God, Source, Spirit, the divine, the Goddess, Gaia, and so on].

Thank you for my family and my sisters. Thank you for all of my relatives and friends. Thank you for the good people who have come into my life, and thank you for the good people who have remained in my life.

Thank you for those who dislike me or consider me to be an enemy, for they teach me more about myself.

Thank you Source, thank you Spirit for everything.

Thank you for my income. Thank you for the abundance that flows through my life. Thank you for my work, and for my abilities as a writer and as an editor. Thank you for my ability to help other writers bring their work into the world.

Thank you Source, thank you Spirit for everything.

Thank you for my health….”

Now, there is a trap here: if we wish for more and better “things” in our lives – bigger and more expensive houses, nicer and more expensive cars, fancier vacations, and nicer clothes – we are getting onto a treadmill which ultimately will not contribute to our happiness. Curiously, this treadmill results in a poverty of sorts.

Our attachment to “things” can cause immeasurable harm and pain.

OK, Andy – so what should I do? Don’t I deserve success and some or all of the finer things in life?

I believe riches exist and come from expressing gratitude, in serving others, in providing services to other humans and other creatures on this planet we share.

When we begin our day by expressing our gratitude and then asking “now, what can I do to be of service?” an infinite number of possibilities open up before us. In helping others, our lives begin to crack open from joy and connection.

If you don’t express your gratitude daily, please begin doing so!

Blessings to all, Andy

About Andrew Shattuck McBride

I am a writer, editor, writing coach, and consultant. I work in a variety of genres, including poetry, short stories, and creative non-fiction. I also have a couple of novels simmering on back burners. THANK YOU to Nan Macy of Village Books for taking this photo (June 2011).
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